A reskin game is a type of game where a developer takes one of their games and then puts a new coat of paint (different graphics, different looking environments and weapons) on it without changing the core gameplay at all, or at the very most barely changing it. Most reskins are marketed as sequels to a game, while they're really just the same game as before just with a new coat of paint.
Examples Of Reskins
- SpongeBob HeroPants - The game is nothing but a reskin of SpongeBob SquarePants: Plankton's Robotic Revenge. Even the robot enemies and some of the music are recycled from Robotic Revenge.
- The Powerpuff Girls: Chemical X-Traction - It is a reskin of Tom & Jerry: Fists of Furry (which VIS Entertainment was also involved with) for the Nintendo 64 and PC, just with The Powerpuff Girls license slapped onto it.
- Risen 3 - The game is the exact same game as Risen 2. Most of the assets and locations are reused, and the combat system is recycled as well. The developers didn't even improve anything.
- Digital Homicide Studios constantly reskinned their games over and over in order to increase the amount of shovelware in their Steam Greenlight account. They had 30 reskins of a mediocre Space Invaders knock off.
- Ninjabread Man, Myth Makers: Trixie In Toyland, Anubis II and Rock N Roll Adventures are pretty much reskins of each other, since they all play the same. In fact, they all run on the same engine.
- Habitrail Hamster Ball - The game is the same exact game as Myth Makers: Orbs of Doom except with a different theme and the "Habitrail" branding. Hamster Heroes is also a reskin of that game, except with no branding.
- World Wrestling Championship -The game is a reskin of K.O King.
- Midnight Race Club: Supercharged! - The game is just a reskin of the infamous game Big Rigs: Over The Road Racing. It just has different vehicles and collision detection.
- Miracle Space Race / Rascal Racers / XS Airboat Racing / ATV Racers. The four games are the same but with different vehicles and environments. Even the characters are the exact same. Also the games were split from a single game called Merlin Racers and striped of some of the content.
- While FIFA games are almost the same games, FIFA 15-19 for the PS3/360, are literally the exact game as FIFA 14 but with a few extra teams, different soundtrack and updated rosters.
- Also, the Nintendo Switch versions of FIFA 20 and FIFA 21 are just Legacy Edition reskins with the same aforementioned updates.
- The Western version of Super Mario Bros. 2 (also known as Super Mario Bros. USA in Japan) is a reskin of a Japanese Famicom Disk System game called Doki Doki Panic. This was because the original Super Mario Bros. 2 (later released as The Lost Levels) was considered by Nintendo of America to be too similar to the first game and they didn't want to release a tweaked version of an existing game as a new game.
- New Super Mario Bros. U and New Super Luigi U use tons of assets and music from New Super Mario Bros. Wii. The only things that are different are the levels, the boss fights, the world designs, and some of the Wii U exclusive mechanics and characters.
- Escape From Ninja Dojo is just a lazy reskin of Sticky Ninja Academy.
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone - The 2003 release of the Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone game simply took the Hogwarts map and all of the spells from the Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets video game.
- ZONE-SAMA's flashes - One of their flashes have been reskinned by hundreds of people, especially Famous Toons Facial.
- Tourist Trophy - The game is a reskin of the well received game Gran Turismo 4, but with motorbikes and has almost every track from the said game plus adds Circuito de Valencia which is also exclusive from Gran Turismo (PSP).
- The Puyo Puyo franchise, upon making its debut on the Sega Mega Drive and the Super NES overseas, was reskinned as Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine and Kirby's Avalanche respectively. When Puyo Puyo Sun came out, the Puyo Puyo cast was properly localized.
- Puyo Puyo Quest!! was reskinned into Cranky Food Friends for a release in the west.
- Touken Ranbu is a reskin of Kantai Collection where anime girls based on ships got replaced with anime guys based on swords.
- Bratz: Forever Diamondz, The Movie, and Girlz Really Rock,were all reskins of Bratz: Rock Angelz, with the same textures, animations, Menus and gameplay elements, with the difference being the story.
- Far Cry: New Dawn is a rehash of Far Cry 5 it uses the same map (only in a post apocalyptic setting) and most of the vehicles, weapons and textures were also flipped from FC5.
- Cars 3: Driven To Win is a reskin of Cars 2: The Video Game, with the same gameplay elements and style also having almost the same power ups in the race battle mode.
- Dragon Ball: Evolution is a reskin of Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai and Shin Budokai 2 with only difference being having characters from the movie of the same name and arenas.
- Dragon Ball Z: Infinite World is a reskin of Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3 with the same animations, textures, characters, music voice clips and ultimate attacks, although it does add in some new characters and other content.
- Baldi's Basics "mods" are just reskins with little to no coding changes.
- Rambo: The Video Game is a reskin of Heavy Fire: Afghanistan. As a result, many of the latter's most criticized features such as the short length padded out with artificial difficulty, the heavy usage of QTEs and the little penalty in case of failure are carried from one game to the other.
- Angry Birds Match is basically a redo of Nibblers, another one of Rovio’s franchises.
- One of the earlier reskins on indie PC gaming networks (GameHouse, Big Fish, Alawar) was Crazy Chicken: Jewel of Darkness. Jewel of Darkness is actually a reskin of Beetle Bug 2, using the same gameplay mechanics and assets.
- The most popular genre reskin in this time was Marble Popper, with clones like Luxor, Tumblebugs, and even Sparkle as well. All of these games were based on the success of Popcap's Zuma.
- Asian Dynamite is extremely similar to Dynamite Cop in design, simply sporting an updated Asian aesthetic and replacing Jean Ivy and Eddie Brown with Caroline Powell and Jennifer Genuine respectively. Both latters use the exact same moves as the formers. Even all of the voiceovers were recycled from Dynamite Cop.
- Bootleg games have lots of examples of this, such as Sonic SNES (a reskin of Speedy Gonzales: Los Gatos Bandidos) and Darkwing Duck 2 (a reskin of Super Contra).
- Some reskins contain no changes besides (possibly even partial) new protagonist sprite. Examples of this are Super Mario 7 / 7 GRAND DAD, a reskin of The Flintstones: The Rescue of Dino & Hoppy where we play as Fred Flintstone with Mario's head and Super Bros. 10: Kung Fu Mario, a reskin of Jackie Chan's Action Kung Fu where we play as Jackie Chan with Mario's head! Brave Boy: Kung Fu Pikachu is a reskin of the same game where we play as Jackie Chan, but this time with Pikachu's head.
- Many of the WWE games from the PS2 Era, Example: SmackDown: Here Comes The Pain and SmackDown: Shut Your Mouth reuses the WWF SmackDown Just Bring It Game Engine and while they added some new things, and made the graphics better. You can see some stuff are the same like the Referee Counting, Character Animations, and the Character Indicator Arrows. Including the later games (SvR2011 - 2K17) reusing the SmackDown VS Raw 2010 Game Engine.
- Backyard Baseball 2003/Backyard Soccer 2004: Both games simply just reskins of Backyard Baseball 2001 and Backyard Soccer: MLS Edition respectively but with different pros and removed ones, four additional playing fields, different music and sound effects, and completely different voice acting.
- Digimon Adventure (Sintax). While itself is a original game, Sintax managed to reskin their poorly-made GBA port into 13 different games, they are Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2, Crash Bandicoot 3 - Warped, Crash Advance IV, Rayman IV, Spider Man 3, Harry Potter IV, Lord of the Rings IV, Sonic 3 - Fighter Sonic, Super Mario DX (Not to be confused with Super Mario Bros. DX), Aladdin 2, Donkey Kong 2, Ultraman - Confrontation Between Justice And Evil, X-Man - Armour of Might.
- Timespinner is just Castlevania: Symphony of the Night but with a different coat of paint.
- Peacekeeper Elite: A reskin of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds but with Chinese nationalist propaganda, both made by Tencent.
- Pokémon Unite and League of Legends: Wild Rift are reskins of Honor of Kings/Arena of Valor due to their similarities with their developer, Tencent and their gameplay other than a few native gimmicks.
- NHL 15 and NHL Legacy Edition on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 are reskins of NHL 14 with just updated rosters, schedule and a different soundtrack.
- CSI: Miami - The setup for the video game CSI: Miami is exactly like the previous two CSI games but with the less-engaging characters of the Miami cast and a series of mysteries that also aren't as interesting, meaning that if you've played either of the previous two games, you'll know right away what to expect from CSI: Miami, as no aspect of the gameplay deviates even slightly from the original formula. Plus, the game has the exact same game engine along with all the trappings that helped sink the previous CSI game.
- Major League Baseball 2K13 is a reskin of MLB 2K12 with just a roster update for the 2013 MLB Season, the Houston Astros in the American League, Online Leagues removed, and a different soundtrack.
- Wii Sports Club is simply a reskin of Wii Sports with the addition of the usage of the Wii U Gamepad.
- Mr. Bean is a reskin of Agent Hugo: Lemoon Twist. Most of the sounds are recycled from that game such as catching food, where on Lemoon Twist you are collecting lemons, in Mr. Bean you are collecting cat biscuits. Additionally, it offers a similar level design, at least in terms of style.
- Just Cause 4 is a rehash of Just Cause 3 with a different open-world map and many weapons are reused from previous game. The character model of Rico Rodriguez looks also exactly the same and it was reused from the previous game.
Why They Suck
- Most of games are actually the same game with few graphical changes. The most notable are sports games published by EA Sports and 2K Sports, especially the Nintendo Switch versions of FIFA games.
- Very little variety, even if there is variety, it still sucks.
- This type of game is the most ordinary cash-grab, which is made only to expect the highest profit.
- Tourist Trophy is one of the most notable well-done reskins ever made compared to other reskins.
- Super Mario Bros. 2 wound up having a lot of its elements integrated into the SMB universe proper, so while it began life as a reskin of Doki Doki Panic, it forms the basis of some well liked canon universe elements.
- A few early video game reskins were used to get a game that was only released in a certain country to be ported onto other countries, which could spark more interest in the original game. Puyo Puyo is a good example.
It should be noted that while most Reskin games are bad, there are some rare exceptions, where a reskin can be actually good, like the previously mentioned Tourist Trophy, Super Mario Bros. 2, Puyo Puyo, and more.